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A Huge Blessing: Clayton State senior reflects on impact made at Dental Hygiene Center

(January 17, 2024) - Connections mean everything to Clayton State Dental Hygiene Senior Moriah Fulmer.

Clayton State Senior Moriah Fulmer is proud to serve her community through the university's Dental Hygiene Center

And so does commitment.

In fact, it may be her family’s commitment to service of others that's been the greatest motivator for the Covington native, as well.

With her sister currently working as a nurse, and her late mother having worked the same profession in the past, Fulmer knew that she wanted to do “something healthcare” with her life, eventually leading to her choosing to pursue a career in Dental Hygiene.

And when that decision was made, she said Clayton State was the obvious choice, being one of the only schools in Georgia to offer a bachelor’s degree for the major.

“My sister was working in Morrow at the time, so that influenced me a little bit,” Fulmer said. “And I had a mentor who had graduated from the dental hygiene program, as well.”

Since coming to Clayton State, Fulmer said that she’s enjoyed the various opportunities of community engagement that the university’s “unique” dental hygiene clinic has presented to her.

“I have this incredible opportunity to see all these people who I would wager you're probably not going to usually see in a dental office,” Fulmer said. “A lot of that, sadly, is accessibility and finances. But we get this huge opportunity at our clinic to see all of these people from all these different walks of life. I think it's a huge blessing to be able to impact them positively.”

When further reflecting on her time in the clinic, the soon-to-be graduate said that it truly has touched her to work with some of the patients who have come to her for help – some even driving from up to two hours away for service.

She also said that many of her instructors, such as Prof. Brandi Clisham and Ms. Heather Eddy, have also made her classroom feel like a second home.

Her impact has been seen by her department, as well, as Fulmer was recently awarded a $1,000 Hinman Scholarship for her dedication and hard work to all who visit the clinic seeking aid.

While she applied thinking there wasn’t a chance she’d win, she said the discovery that she did was nothing short of “shocking” and will serve as a “catalyst” moment to carry her throughout her final semester at Clayton State.

“I really didn't think that there was a ton of chance of me getting it, but it was really a huge encouragement,” Fulmer said. “I just wanted to enjoy this last semester and really give it my all.”

When asked how she wants to approach her final semester and what she wants to take away from it, Fulmer said that it really is that simple. 

Until Spring Commencement arrives, her sole focus is truly set on enjoying both the unique experience of the Laker Clinic as well as her remaining time with her patients, professors, and peers.

She also said that she wants to be “empathetic” and “generous” with her knowledge and skills, especially towards all children who may one day come to see her.

“I would really like to enjoy working one last semester in a different perspective than I’ve been,” Fulmer said. “I always do my job, but I would really like to see how well I can positively influence who I'm sitting with for a couple of hours.”

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